Out To Lunch (Episode 1)
Ballerina Is My Toaster Sentient? Metal Boy The Cowboy Astronaut of Mother’s Day Aliens Took My Stereo All I Ever Do (is sit in my room)
album Sex Dummy 2003 pictures Face Academy Andy Hollingworth  2004 song Ballerina 2002 video Ballerina Edinburgh 2003
CAST & CREW Hosted by Rob Deering and Russell Howard Regulars: Mark Olver, Colin Hoult, Fergus Craig, Joanna Neary, Lawry Lewin, Dan Antopolski, Gary Le Strange, Jason Manford (1-2), Alun Cochrane (3-6), Josie Long (3-6) Guests: Justin Edwards (1), Laura Solon (1), Mark Watson (2), Ben Willbond (3), Howard Read (4), Spencer Brown (5), Tony Law (6) Produced by Richard Grocock and Shaun Parry An Avalon Production for BBC Radio 2 BROADCAST DETAILS BBC Radio 2 - Saturday lunchtimes (1-2 pm) Show 1: April 15, 2006 Show 2: April 22, 2006 Show 3: April 29, 2006 Show 4: May 6, 2006 Show 5: May 13, 2006 Show 6: May 20, 2006 RECORDING DETAILS The shows were all recorded live in front of an audience at the Villiers Theatre on Villiers Street, London (a Victorian-style music hall near Charing Cross Station, formerly known as Players’ Theatre and now Charing Cross Theatre). Looking it up now, it’s hard to find any evidence it was actually ever called Villiers Theatre, but I swear it was at the time. It must have been a very short- lived name. All my songs were sung live over the same backing tracks I used in my stage act. BACKGROUND This was one of those live variety show type things that work so well on Radio 2. I remember being very enthusiastic about it at first - on paper, it had a really good balance of elements, with a great mix of stand-up, character, sketch comedy and music, and I was thrilled to be the main recurring musical act. Everyone in it was top notch - some having gone on to be big names since - so it was an absolute privilege to be asked to do it. But it came at a bad time for me. By 2006, I’d gone through the ringer a bit with Gary, what with losing all the ticket money on my second Edinburgh run and abandoning my third show halfway through. At the time, I was deep in the recording process for Gary’s fourth project, Beef Scarecrow, which was a complete departure from everything I’d done before. The things I was writing were much more freeform, darker and stranger - not necessarily appropriate for a lunchtime on the BBC - so we agreed I’d concentrate on my already-established, tried-and-tested material. Which of course makes absolute blinding sense. But I was starting to hate all that stuff. For the previous few years, I’d been continually moving forward, the act always evolving into something new. But the new stuff wasn’t always what people wanted to hear. This seemed like another example of that, so somewhere underneath, I think I must have resented it. It felt like being caught in a time warp, unable to move forward or embrace the things I was doing with any great enthusiasm. In short, I had a bad attitude towards my own work, and wasn’t in the sanest mental health. Still, I thought, if I could somehow get my head around it, I could probably make it work, and weave a new narrative for Gary which managed to bridge the old and the new. Maybe show some kind of evolution over the course of the six episodes. Maybe I could even showcase some of my brand new stuff towards the end? But that didn’t happen. As the weeks went on, I started to lose confidence - not in the show, but in everything I was doing on it. By halfway through the run, I felt like a total imposter - a fraud who was just one meeting away from being sacked. Maybe my bits weren’t going down very well? Maybe I was just stressed out. But I didn’t feel like nice, funny Gary Le Strange any more. Being him was a struggle. By this point, the bulk of his story was starting to look like a failure. The writing was on the wall for Gary, and this show seemed like just another nail in his coffin. I wasn’t asked back for Series 2. THOUGHTS & FEELINGS I haven’t listened to the show properly since it aired - not sure I even listened to it at the time, to be honest - and haven’t thought about it much since then either. So engaging with it now feels like having to lift up a loose paving stone when you know for certain there’s a writhing nest of maggots underneath. Sounds awful, doesn’t it? Well, yes - it was a pretty awful time. But that was nearly 17 years ago. And I have to do it some time or I’ll never fix the patio. And that’s where this precarious paving stone metaphor ends. BEST TRACK No idea. My memories of this show are still pretty raw, so I can barely bring myself to listen to any of it. If this website is therapy - which I strongly suspect it might be - I’ll have to listen to them all sooner or later. But I can only do it one step at a time. I’ll update this bit when I start trying.
video Loose Lips Living TV 2003 song Photocopier 2004 album Polaroid Suitcase 2003
OUT TO LUNCH: SERIES 1
CD LABELS
The production team at Avalon kindly furnished cast members with CD recordings of the shows they were in. There were no inlays but thankfully the labels tell me which one is which:
Out To Lunch: Series 1 Show 1 Out To Lunch: Series 1 Show 2 Out To Lunch: Series 1 Show 3 Out To Lunch: Series 1 Show 4 Out To Lunch: Series 1 Show 5 Out To Lunch: Series 1 Show 6 video The Chinese Ghost of Christmas  London 2014 song The Chinese Ghost of Christmas 2003 radio The Day  The Music Died 2003
OUT TO LUNCH:
album Face Academy video Loose Lips album Polaroid Suitcase song The Chinese Ghost of Christmas radio The Day The Music Died lyrics The Chinese Ghost of Christmas Out To Lunch (Episode 1)
Ballerina Is My Toaster Sentient? Metal Boy The Cowboy Astronaut of Mother’s Day Aliens Took My Stereo All I Ever Do (is sit in my room)
SERIES 1
CAST & CREW Hosted by Rob Deering and Russell Howard Regulars: Mark Olver, Colin Hoult, Fergus Craig, Joanna Neary, Lawry Lewin, Dan Antopolski, Gary Le Strange, Jason Manford (1-2), Alun Cochrane (3-6), Josie Long (3-6) Guests: Justin Edwards (1), Laura Solon (1), Mark Watson (2), Ben Willbond (3), Howard Read (4), Spencer Brown (5), Tony Law (6) Produced by Richard Grocock and Shaun Parry An Avalon Production for BBC Radio 2 BROADCAST DETAILS BBC Radio 2 - Saturday lunchtimes (1-2 pm) Show 1: April 15, 2006 Show 2: April 22, 2006 Show 3: April 29, 2006 Show 4: May 6, 2006 Show 5: May 13, 2006 Show 6: May 20, 2006 RECORDING DETAILS The shows were all recorded live in front of an audience at the Villiers Theatre on Villiers Street, London (a Victorian-style music hall near Charing Cross Station, formerly known as Players’ Theatre and now Charing Cross Theatre). Looking it up now, it’s hard to find any evidence it was actually ever called Villiers Theatre, but I swear it was at the time. It must have been a very short-lived name. All my songs were sung live over the same backing tracks I used in my stage act. BACKGROUND This was one of those live variety show type things that work so well on Radio 2. I remember being very enthusiastic about it at first - on paper, it had a really good balance of elements, with a great mix of stand- up, character, sketch comedy and music, and I was thrilled to be the main recurring musical act. Everyone in it was top notch - some having gone on to be big names since - so it was an absolute privilege to be asked to do it. But it came at a bad time for me. By 2006, I’d gone through the ringer a bit with Gary, what with losing all the ticket money on my second Edinburgh run and abandoning my third show halfway through. At the time, I was deep in the recording process for Gary’s fourth project, Beef Scarecrow, which was a complete departure from everything I’d done before. The things I was writing were much more freeform, darker and stranger - not necessarily appropriate for a lunchtime on the BBC - so we agreed I’d concentrate on my already-established, tried-and- tested material. Which of course makes absolute blinding sense. But I was starting to hate all that stuff. For the previous few years, I’d been continually moving forward, the act always evolving into something new. But the new stuff wasn’t always what people wanted to hear. This seemed like another example of that, so somewhere underneath, I think I must have resented it. It felt like being caught in a time warp, unable to move forward or embrace the things I was doing with any great enthusiasm. In short, I had a bad attitude towards my own work, and wasn’t in the sanest mental health. Still, I thought, if I could somehow get my head around it, I could probably make it work, and weave a new narrative for Gary which managed to bridge the old and the new. Maybe show some kind of evolution over the course of the six episodes. Maybe I could even showcase some of my brand new stuff towards the end? But that didn’t happen. As the weeks went on, I started to lose confidence - not in the show, but in everything I was doing on it. By halfway through the run, I felt like a total imposter - a fraud who was just one meeting away from being sacked. Maybe my bits weren’t going down very well? Maybe I was just stressed out. But I didn’t feel like nice, funny Gary Le Strange any more. Being him was a struggle. By this point, the bulk of his story was starting to look like a failure. The writing was on the wall for Gary, and this show seemed like just another nail in his coffin. I wasn’t asked back for Series 2. THOUGHTS & FEELINGS I haven’t listened to the show since it aired - not sure I even listened to it at the time, to be honest - and haven’t thought about it much since then either. So engaging with it now feels like having to lift up a loose paving stone when you know for certain there’s a writhing nest of maggots underneath. Sounds awful, doesn’t it? Well, yes - it was a pretty awful time. But that was nearly 17 years ago. And I have to do it some time or I’ll never fix the patio. And that’s where this precarious paving stone metaphor ends. BEST TRACK No idea. My memories of this show are still pretty raw, so I can barely bring myself to listen to any of it. If this website is therapy - which I strongly suspect it might be - I’ll have to listen to them all sooner or later. But I can only do it one step at a time. I’ll update this bit when I start trying.
CD LABELS
The production team at Avalon kindly furnished cast members with CD recordings of the shows they were in. There were no inlays but thankfully the labels tell me which one is which:
Out To Lunch: Series 1 Show 1 Out To Lunch: Series 1 Show 2 Out To Lunch: Series 1 Show 3 Out To Lunch: Series 1 Show 4 Out To Lunch: Series 1 Show 5 Out To Lunch: Series 1 Show 6